Kishida vows to step up work to fight soaring prices

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Prime Minister Fumio Kishida vowed on Tuesday to step up work on an emergency package of measures to address prices that have been soaring since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“We will respond in an urgent and flexible way to the crisis we are facing now,” Kishida said at the first ministerial meeting on the measures.

The government plans to come up with the package by the end of this month as prices for a wide range of items, including crude oil and grains, have been soaring.

The package will include programs to deal with high crude oil prices, ensure stable supply of resources and food, support small and midsize companies and provide aid to people in need.

“We must prevent soaring prices for crude oil, materials and food from causing a major impact on people’s lives and economic activities, and hindering a smooth recovery of economic and social activities from the coronavirus crisis,” Kishida said.

The government plans to tap ¥5.5 trillion in reserve funds set aside under its budget for fiscal 2022, which began this month.